Top JUCO back likes the Noles

Fans that follow FSU recruiting know that FSU needs at least two running backs in the 2008 class. Questions remain if British Footman is going to qualify, leaving the Noles with one true back in Jermaine Thomas. NoleDigest caught up 4-star running back LaGarrette Blount to discuss his recruiting and the impact an FSU will have on him.

LaGarrette was a first team All-State Mississippi junior college player last year. During his freshman year, Blount rushed for 1,259 yards and 12 touchdowns in only 8 games. This year he is one of the top junior college backs in the nation. FSU is one of the schools that is recruiting him right now, and he states overall recruiting is picking up for him. He says, "Recruiting is picking up for me. FSU, Arizona State, West Virginia, Memphis, Oklahoma State, Ole Miss and Alabama are the schools that I have been hearing from the most lately. Overall, I'd have to say that FSU, Memphis, West Virginia and Ole Miss are recruiting me the hardest right now and those schools are sticking out to me at this time."

Being from Terry, FL, he is very familiar with the Tallahassee area and the fact that FSU is close to home is intriguing to the East Mississippi standout. "FSU is close to home, and I like that. At FSU I can go there and I'd have a chance to start, or at least play a lot. I am planning an official visit December 14th. While I'm there I plan on really looking at their academics because I know what about the football there," stated Blount.

LaGarrette is a big back that the Noles have been sorely lacking since Greg Jones left. Rick Trickett is the coach in charge of Blount's recruiting, and he states their relationship is off to a good start. He states, "Coach Trickett is the one I hear from at FSU. If I'm not mistaken they can only call once a week, so I spoke to him this past Monday. We've been talking almost every week lately. He is a pretty cool guy who shoots it straight to me. He tells me they are looking for a big back that can carry the ball 25 times a game. He asked me the most carries I have had, and I told him last year I carried it 42 and 38 times in a couple games. He says that if I come in and work hard there I'd play my junior year and have a great shot at starting my senior year. Even though I don't have an official offer from them yet, they say one is coming. If I do get it that'll put the Noles at the top and I'd have to think about committing or taking a few more visits. It'd be 50/50."

For LaGarrette there are a few things he is looking for in his eventual college. While they are the common aspects many look for, for Blount they are what'll set one school apart from the others. "For me education is first and foremost. I am looking at a school where I can get my degree in physical education. Also, location is important and that's a reason I like FSU. Having my parents being able to see me play is important to me. The final aspect is playing time. I want to go to a school where I can contribute as soon as I step on campus," said Blount.

When thinking of the top big backs in this class, LaGarrette must be among the first mentioned due to his size and speed combination. The 6'2" 230 pound runner is a load to bring down. He tells NoleDigest, "I am great at breaking tackles and I have very good speed. For a guy with size like I have I also have pretty good vision. I don't get tackled in the open-field and I rarely get caught from behind. I am a real physical guy. I'd say that I need to work on my agility some. That is one of the disadvantages of being the size I am. I work every day on that part of my game. I feel that I'm a complete back, though."

Most junior college backs have filled out physically before they get into a major program. The December graduate feels that before he gets to his collegiate destination in January he needs to work on two things. He says, "Right now I am running a 4.43 forty. It is legit. I'd like to get it down to around a 4.4 flat. I am happy with being 230 and that's where I want to stay at. The 230 is good weight and there is no fat on me. I am a muscular kid. Some people say I am big bruiser like Greg Jones was but with better speed. If I can get a little faster and keep my weight, I'll be ready to go."

While Darrell Scott and Jamie Harper look to no longer be options for the Noles, they have very good options in standouts like Blount. If Harper pulls the trigger this weekend like some think, look for the JUCO star to get the offer he's been looking for. Stay tuned to NoleDigest for further updates as we track the recruitment of LaGarrette and the rest of the 2008 class.

Nole Digest Top Stories